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Summary

  • Palace dominated the early exchanges

  • Henry and Adams-Collman came close to opening the scoring for the young Eagles

  • Massiah-Edwards had Watford's best chance of the half, though it was saved by Koshaba

  • Half-time: Crystal Palace 0-0 Watford

  • Second-half substitute Lameiras was brought down inside the box and Henry stepped up to dispatch the penalty to put Palace ahead 55 minutes in

  • Henry came close to doubling the lead with 10 minutes remaining after he hit the crossbar with a looping header

  • Full-time: Crystal Palace 1-0 Watford

The Floodlit Cup is an U15 tournament that is designed to provide an experience of playing matches in the evening in tricky conditions.

It is part of the Premier League's Youth Development Phase, to ensure the players are prepared for similar situations as they progress up the ranks to U18s, U23s and beyond.

U15 Floodlit Cup Highlights: Crystal Palace 1-0 Watford

The young Eagles compete in the U15 Floodlit Cup each season and they last won it in 2019, with a number of familiar names such as Tayo Adaramola, Victor Akinwale and Fionn Mooney part of the winning squad.

Palace fended off Brighton, Millwall and Charlton in the earlier group stage of the tournament. They then progressed to beat Arsenal in the quarter-final stage and recently triumphed 4-1 over Aston Villa in the semi-final.

The young Eagles got off to a great start, with striker Henry at the heart of the attacks. The Palace No. 7 managed to get a good shot away early on to test Morris in the Watford goal.

Moments later, he won the ball high up the pitch and it broke to Adams-Collman. The winger’s shot was fierce, though it deflected off the Watford defence and out for a corner.

Spurred on by the home support, the young Eagles kept pushing for the opener. Beaumont whipped in a cross which was met by an onrushing Bosu-Amako, though his shot was saved by Morris.

Watford grew into the game and managed to fashion chances of their own 10 minutes before the break. Massiah-Edwards’ effort from distance was well saved by Koshaba in the Palace goal.

The final five minutes of the half saw a flurry of chances for both teams. Dashi broke into the box, though he couldn’t get a clear shot away. Amass had the best chance of the half for the visitors, a well-struck effort on the edge of the box, though Koshaba was equal to it.

After the interval, the Hornets came out with a spring in their step. They enjoyed more of the ball and kept Palace pushed back in their own half.

For all of Watford’s dominance in the early exchanges of the second-half, it was Palace who took the lead. Second-half substitute Lameiras drove into the penalty area and was subsequently brought down by the Watford defence.

Henry stepped up from the spot and made no mistake, sending the ‘keeper the wrong way to put the young Eagles ahead.

The visitors looked for a way back into the game and came close through Notely - though his well hit effort from 30-yards crept past the post.

With 10 minutes remaining, Palace nearly doubled their lead. Henry had two chances in the space of a minute - an effort that flashed across the face of goal and a header which looped onto the crossbar.

Late on, Watford came close to snatching an equaliser to force the game into extra time, however their efforts fell wide of the mark and didn’t trouble Koshaba in the Palace goal.

After five minutes of stoppage time, the referee brought an end to proceedings and the young Eagles were crowned champions of the U15 Floodlit Cup South.

They will face Sunderland, winners of the U15 Floodlit Cup North, on Friday 6th May.

Crystal Palace: Koshaba, Elliot, King, Jemide, Beaumont, Williams, Adams-Collman, Bonsu-Amako, Dashi (Lameiras, 46), Derry (Redhead, 77), Henry.

Subs not used: Hill, Holmes, Whyte, Omobolaji, Walker-Smith.

Watford: Morris, Nottley (Barrett, 68), Amass, Ramirez-Espain, Georgiou, Nabizada (Smith-Daley, 52), Sanghraika, Massiah-Edwards, Bolding, Bowlin.

Subs not used: Thrussell, Smith, Riza, Sala, Vancea.